davits on the weather bow! Look sharp, lads!
Stand by the tackles and ease her off! Take charge,
Mr Beasley! Let her go!"
Four seamen with the first mate sprang into
their places. The small boal bearing the Spitfires
name swung free of its davits and descended with
a gentle Hop into the sea, while the yacht, treed of
her master power, rolled easily in the trough of
caressing waves. .
••Where is he 3 " cried Polly, endangering her own
young life in scrambling to a point of better observa
tion on the rail, "oh. there he is! Look! Look!
■•What is he doing:-" vailed Aunt Mary, still
holding her hands before her eyes, yet perishing
with human curiosity.
Now there was no doubt whatever as to what
Jonah was doing; for he was in full view, and his
actions spoke for themselves. With one powerful
hand he was keeping himself afloat, and with the
other was engaged in shooting at the tug' -.at with
a heavy but "wet revolver, while his mocking per
secutors desisted suddenly in their coarse laughter
and dived for the engine room. •Things, as I oily
expressed it tritely, "were happening
"He sees us'" she cried. "Me sees us! Then,
as the small boat neared him. the three women
huddled together and called out hysterically, some
times singly and at others in shrill concert. "Huiry,
men' Row as fast as ever you can: Hiey ye
got him! They're taking him in! Oh, 1 m so
glad!" the women shouted, with other inane and
idiotic observations which are usually in vogue when
a person is being rescued.
As the triumphant boat came bobbing back, there
fell a silence of expectancy; and yet not quite fcr
behind the smokestack Ormond and Tracy were en
gaged in an earnest, low toned argument. _
'•• Hut it can't make any difference, claimed
Tracv "We pick up a strange man. and -"
"Well it can make a difference!" th< other whis
pered hotly. "I don't know -I'm worried about
Martin. He ought to have been more careful. If — "
"Nonsense. |im! Why—"
"For Heaven's sake don't call me Jim. It only
you had brains enough to—"
But here the interesting conversation ended
abruptly as the rescuing boat grated along the
yacht's 'side and the sympathetic women called to
"Is he all right. Mr. Beasley? Is he conscious?
The answer' came in the form of a ringing, lull
throated laugh, and a further verbal assurance ex
pressed in a musically deep voice. " Sound as a trivet,
thank you. I'll be Up in a minute to prove it in
So the women waited.
"Stand by for the painter!" called Cap
tain foe from the bridge. "Cleat it, you
lubbers! Hold her fast!
Whatever these directions meant, the
seamen executed them with willingness and
despatch, and in a moment more Jonah
ran nimbly up the ladder and stood on deck.
Hi-: was a man of perhaps twenty-six
years, tanned to a healthy brown, and
standing a good six feet in his sopping sh"cs.
He was hailess, coatless. ilis outing shirt.
torn literally to ribbons by his friends of the
tugboat, disclosed a view of dee]), wide
chest and shoulders, while his sinewy arms
swung easily at his narrow hips. His head
was poised much as Valda's was, carelessly,
but with |«»wer, — and the face was one
which any woman would remember. It
was fresh and fearless, pleasing in every
line from the steady gray eyes to the firm
square chin which was marked with a heavy
crease It was a handsome face, and be
sides it wore a dash of impishness, as though
its owner found a modicum of humor even
in being drowned.
So the women gave him a smile of wel
come. Yes, they (lid; for show us a woman,
of any age or of any dime, that does not appreciate
the goodly figure of a man! Therefore the women
smiled U]>on Jonah, ami were glad he came.
If the women were pleased, however, one man
was not. He peered from behind the smokestack,
grew slightly pale, and whispered hoarsely:
" Blazes! Do you know who that is.'"
" It's Brown!"
"Brown? What Brown?"
"Why, him, the chap that — "
"Keep your blamed month shut!" enjoined Or
mond tor the second time, and Tracy, who was in
the very act of opening it again, wisely obeyed in
structions. The Captain was looking in their direc
tion, and the newest newcomer on the Spitfire was
speaking to the women:
"1 beg to apologize, ladies, both for my rumpled
and moist condition and this somewhat unconven
tional manner of intrusion. Might 1 ask where 1 am?"
" You certainly may," said Valda, smiling cor
dially. "This is the private yacht Spitfire, and 1 am
the owner's daughter. Miss Girard."
"Delighted. Miss Girard, believe me." he an
swere !. with a bow. "My name is Bruce Morson, of
Valda acknowledged the informal introduction;
then, as she knew the others were burning for in
formation, she asked how he chanced to be thrown
from the passing tug.
Morson laughed. "Do you know, " he began, "it
SUNDAY MAGAZINE FOR JUNE 21. 1908
is rather a serious matter, and is saved only by
well by a sense of humor. lamon a business tup,
and was ,n< .st anxx -us f - catch this evemng's steamer
from Calais. I missed the midday boat at Dover
and engaged that tug to ferry me across the ( han
nel I'ai.l a hundred dollars, and foolishly gave it m
advance. Awhile ago that shark of a Captain dou
bled his price. Naturally I refused to be srodfeda
second tune. The argument became spirited Ihe
result you witnessed. It wa., ridiculous, but inevita
*'l think it was an outrageous shame'" declared
Aunt Mary, without even being introduced to the
handsome victim. .
"Thank you, madam," he returned, with the ut
most deference to her age and commonsense. >
agree with you most heartily.
AT this moment, to the utter astonishment of
everyone, Ormond strolled up as if nothing had
happened and took part with amazing coolness
in the conversation
"Quite a remarkable experience, he observed.
"What do you intend doing now.'"
"I am," declare- 1 the young man suavely, with a
graceful wave of his hand toward the women, "at
the mercy of the angels. Whither are you I
and when do you expect to get there?"
"New York." Ormond informed him. "We hope
to make it by the twentieth."
"Bully!" exclaimed Morson. forgetting himseit
in his evident satisfaction. "That suits me exactly,
if you'll take me as a passenger. I'm in a position
to pay in wet bills; or." he paused slightly, — or
I am perfectly willing to work my passage.'^
Here Valda' cut in. on her own account. " Neither.
I thirl-,-, w ; ". be necessary, Mr Morson." She checked
his ihink.,. and proceeded, with an icy formality in
he.- tones, "Allow me to present you to Mr. < tarnond,
who was, unt'l a few moments ago, in charge ol my
father's yacht. ' .
Ormond ignored *h'S pointed reference to his fall
from official grace, shook hands cordially, and ex
pressed himself as being greatly pleased in being of
service to a castaway. "And now," he said, by way
of dismissing the matter finally, "'I suggest that one
of the seamen find you a dry costume."
This, no doubt, was meant in kindness: but, in
view of his inexplicable conduct in refusing to pick
up a drowning man. Valda was disposed to place a
different construction on his present attitude.
"Mr Ormond," she said. "1 hardly think the cos
tume of a sailor will suit Mr. Morson at all." She
turned to tin- mate beside her and issued an order
which later bore strange fruit: "Mr. Beasley, you
will kindly take this gentleman to your own cabin
and tit him out as best you can."
Morson stepped back a pace, in sheer astonish
ment, then smiled and inclined his head. "Miss
Girard," he answered, in low tone.! earnestness,
"there are no words in which a gentleman may ex
press his appreciation of your courtesy."
"My father," she returned, with a sidelong glance
of contempt at Ormond, "is always glad to welcome
gentlemen as his guests."
Ormond shrugged and turned away. There was
more in the matter than he could explain in the pres
ence of the newcomer: so he bore the lash in silence,
reserving his vindication for a future time.
As for the castaway, he did not try to answer his
generous hostess: but he made her a sweeping bow.
It was the kind of bow in which men of the South pay
tribute to gentlewomen of their own people, — v
courtly bow. loaded to the throat with deference,
yet in it there was not one single vestige of humility.
Valda remembered that bow afterward. She tried
to forget it ; but she failed.
IV. Ormond's Seesaw Rise to Grace
AS may have been noted, the coming of Bruce
■^*" Morson affected the various members of the
yacht's party in varying ways, according to his or
her separate and distinctive point of view. Ormond
and Tracy were clearly troubled; but that was
their own affair, which could be rebutted later
on Captain Joe received the castaway with open
arms, if f<>r no other reason than that his advent
tended to nip the authority of Orrnond. Valda
was serenely contented with herself at being in
strumental in saving a human life; and. if this
human life chanced to be a young and extremely
good looking one, she, of course, was in nowise to
blame, She had no hand whatever in the selection.
Aunt Mary was politely, placidly, perfectly,
pleased. "My deal she observed to \alla, "I
approve of that young man. Hi name !<■■ a good
one. I happen to know, personally, that both the
Brutes and the Morsons are most delightful and
aristocratic families. I am very glad indeed, my
child that you declined to have him dressed as a
"I had my reasons. Aunt Man.-," said Valda, with
a grim expression about her mouth, "and I wanted
Mr. Onnond to understand my reasons."
"I should think s<»!" exclaimed Polly, in . mix
ture of approval and indignation. "The idea of
Mr. I •■ ■• ■ nd not wanting to stop and save a <!r ►•urn
ing man! 11 was simply horrid' Besides, I call it
luck to pick up a young fellow like that, and right
out of the sea too! Oh. goody!"
This last young woman took a more material
view of the day's occurrences then anyone else on
board. That an otherwise uneventful ocean trip
should be miraculously transformed by the arrival
of thr«.-e • --.-■ of trousers was, to put it
mildly, a special dispensation of Provider* c, seem
ing to her optimistic soul like manna distrijb :"• ■: to
the desert bound, hungry little children of Israel
Three men! All in a bunch! Yea; truly a miracle !—
that is to say, a miracle with limitations. Polly
interpreted in this wise:
"Of course, it's hardly fair to count Mr Tr; y,
because he isn't one bit attractive, and has a look
of unhappiness that makes me think he is married
and has been for a very, very, long time. Anyhow,
he is a man! Mr. Ormond is much better. He is
quite handsome, — side face, — but is too well ilong
in years to be of any great conversational value.
But as for the new one, — the white tooth:. Gre
cian nosed, straight legged one. with darling little
wet curls nestling all over hi beautiful head--roh.
Lord!" Obviously. Polly Thurn i was impressed.
"And a person." she declared, with rising warmth,
"who would think for a quarter of a half a second
of leaving a Romeo Adonis like that right out ia
the middle of the cold water—"
S-SH!" cautioned Valda. as the person under ad
erse criticism came toward them from "'.:r.ird's
cabin, followed by the unhappily married Tracy.
•■ Pardon me, Miss Girard," said the gray haired
possibility; "but may we have a word with yon—
my secretary and I — at I
Valda rose and answered in polite dignity. " Yes.
Mr. Ormond. you may There are several matters
to be discussed immediately."
She led the way into the main saloon and waited
till the door was closed, while Tracy took :h-- adii
tional precaution of shutting the traps of two port
holes that opened on the deck. Valda noted this,
but said nothing, though there were lines about
her mouth which warned her guests that the inter
view might be squally. She did not wait to be
placed on the defensive, but opened the battle
without delay, seizing on the advantage of attack.
"'.Now, gentlemen," she began when all three
were seated, "you will pardon me for speaking
frankly. The matter is a business one."
There was a slighf pause. Tracy was nervous,
as proved by his shifting eyes and restless feet;
but Ormond* seemed perfectly at ease. He was
about to speak; but Valda checked him.
"Your manner of coming aboard my father's
yacht," said she. "was, to say the lea I irregular.' 1
Ormond smiled in fatherly indulgence. '■ Yea
received Mr. Girard's telegrams, did you not
"Yes, certainly," she admitted; "but anyone
could send a telegram."
"Miss Girard!" There was genuine reproach in
the tone; but Valda answered remorselessly:
"The matter, Mr. Ormond, is a business one. ad
mitting of no informality."
"Granted," he returned: "but what, may I ask,
leads you to suppose that friends of your father
Would deliberately break the law in forging mes
"Your own recent conduct." she retorted angrily,
a red spot flaming in either cheek, while h -T
brown eyes snapped tire "I cannot conceive of
any friends of my father being willing to •: ■ rt a
helpless and drowning man." Again she < .'::■■■ ked
his protest, and continued hot! "Your order tor *
full steam ahead was in violation not only of c very
seaman's »de of mercy, but of that of every human
creature of God who calls himself a man!"
CHE had risen to her feet, feeling that not one
*■* moment longer could she look on this y
and hold her dignity; but Ormond h.u! riser: ..'..- .
and stepped between her and the door.
" Miss Girard." he said quietly, "in your igr >ranee
of the facts, and your lack of observation. \vu are
perfectly justified in condemning me. Won you
For an instant she held him, eye to eye: but in
his glance she found m> wavering: then sht) so:
her lips and complied with his request.
Ormond continued in the same unruffled ' ne,
"It is not easy for a man to desert a fellow creature
Continued en pep IS
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